Obasanjo library: SERAP seeks law on disclosure of donations to fund presidential libraries

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, SERAP, has urged the Acting President Professor Yemi Osinbajo to “urgently propose a bill that would specifically regulate and bring transparency to any future presidential library fundraising process, and make public disclosure of major donations towards the establishment of any such library mandatory.”

The organisation said that, “Osinbajo should work closely with the leadership of the National Assembly to ensure the speedy passage of any such bill into law.”

In a statement dated March 5 and signed by SERAP Senior Staff Attorney, Timothy Adewale, the organisation said: “The proposed bill would give Nigerians a better view of major donations going to presidential libraries, and provide access to information as to whether donors gain any special Aso Rock influence. The bill would minimize the potential for a quid pro quo, influence-peddling; and help to build trust and confidence among a citizenry that already questions the ethics of elected officials.”

The statement reads in part: “Proposing bill that would provide information to Nigerians and allow them to know those who help pay for presidential libraries is not only a matter of public interest but also crucially important to enhance transparency, accountability and strengthen this government’s anti-corruption efforts.”

“It’s unfair to Nigerians for a sitting or former president to raise an unlimited amount of money for a presidential library and not to have the obligation to publish information on the major contributors. Without transparency into donations, a president could potentially take an official action in exchange for or in expectation of a future donation to his or her presidential library and the public would be unaware.”

“Without openness and transparency, potential donors may seek to use library donations as a means to secure special access or political favours to authorities in Abuja.”

“The proposed bill should include a requirement to disclose details about each contributor, the total value of each contribution, the source(s) of the contribution, and the date of each contribution. Any such information must be publicly and widely published, including on a website that is free for the public to access and that is searchable, sortable, and downloadable.”

“The bill should also prohibit the making of a contribution through a corporation or other legal entity that may be used to conceal the identity of the person actually providing the contribution.”

“Former President Olusegun Obasanjo would serve public interest by making a voluntary disclosure of every single donation, particularly large donations, to his newly launched presidential library. This would contribute to greater openness, something that the presidential library seeks to promote about the work and achievements of Obasanjo while in government.”


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  • God dey

    Thank you so much SERAP for this! Obj that was so poor in 1999 suddenly became a billionaire because he was a president of Nigeria. Something definitely must be wrong. What a joke of a wasted generation. #OBJmustDiscloseDonationsForHisLibrary

    • Dr

      SERAP, no need for OBJ to declare whom the donors were. It is public knowledge. The funds were sourced through Presidential extortion. In the last few months of OBJs second term, the old man launched an appeal fund in Abeoukuta, where Nigeria’s biz moguls, including Dangote, Otedola and Adenuga contributed billions of Naira for the construction of the Library. This was a payback for undue biz favors done to the moguls by the then President. Recently, In a response to a verbal assault by Folorunsho Alakija, OBJ brazenly stated that he made 25 billionaires in Nigeria during his eight year tenure as President of Nigeria

      • Dr

        Manipulation of the cement industry by Dangote and the sale of AP (forte oil) to Otedola were among some of the favors done to the moguls

  • George

    I hope CAT has cut off Femi Fanala tongue because I am waiting his useless message/comment now that is concern his kins man not Ibori again.